Christian classical education is Christ-centered education taught through a Biblical worldview. Rather than viewing education as a means of occupational training, Christian classical education views the goal of education to be develop wisdom and virtue within students. Christian classical education seeks to cultivate hearts and souls in addition to filling minds with knowledge.
Christian classical education emphasizes truth, goodness, and beauty in all aspects of education. Students are guided to recognize and appreciate that which is true, good and beautiful. This, in turn, develops wisdom as students are able to differentiate between good and evil, between worldliness and godliness.
Christian classical education adheres to the 3 stages of development outlined in the the trivium. The first stage of the trivium is the Grammar Stage and roughly correlates to grades K-5. In this stage students are ripe for memorization and stories. The second stage of learning is the Logic Stage, which corresponds to grades 6-8. During the Logic Stage, students begin wrestling with and making connections between information they have learned during the grammar stage. The final stage of the trivium is the Rhetoric Stage which takes place in high school and beyond. Students in the Rhetoric Stage are able to articulate the information and connections they have gathered.
Christian classical education teaches students how to think rather than what to think. Students are guided to participate in class discussions, read source material, apply background knowledge and draw their own conclusions about past events. Logic is emphasized and critical thinking is integrated across all subjects.
Courses have a strong emphasis on literature. A strong literature element enriches classes and provides students with additional perspectives on the material.
Students are encouraged to pursue excellence in all endeavors: academically and in life.
How Does Christian Classical Education Look at Arete?
Developing the whole person
Truth, Goodness and Beauty
How to Think
Classes are taught from the perspective that all creation is God's creation. Every aspect of Arete from course planning to student interactions operates from a gospel-centered point of view: we are all sinners, saved only by Christ's death on the cross. Academic achievement is extremely important at Arete, but the highest priority is students who know and love the Lord.
Classes emphasize exposing students to the best of Western Civilization by focusing on the best of literature, the best of art and music and history in Chronological order from creation to current. Truth is understood as objective based soley on the Bible and that which has been revealed to man by God. Drama, Musical Theater and Art are offered to develop the creative arts.
K-2 classes focus on stories and memorization. 3rd - 5th classes offer increasing opportunities to gather, solidify, and organize information they have been learning. 6th - 8th classes include an increasing amount of reading, class discussions, essays. Logic classes are offered to this age group. 9th - 12th classes require large amounts of reading and compositions. Students continue to have class discussions, as well as debates.
Rather than lecture students, our instructors guide students in thinking through material they are studying. Class discussions further help students to think about the material critically. Formal Logic is offered to help students understand how to critically analyze material.
K-2 classes are all literature-based, offering students plenty of opportunity to interact with quality literature. 3rd - 8th history classes are literature based and require that students read several novels over the summer and during the school year. High school history classes are a study of the Great Books, combining literature and history. A Shakespeare class is offered for students in grades 2 - 9 in which students will perform a Shakespeare play in the original language.
Academic excellence is emphasized in every class. We choose rigorous curriculum that challenges students. Arete students are expected to come to class prepared with all home assignments complete. We believe that when the standards are set high, students will rise to the challenge.